How can you get money in Seville during your trip? What is the easiest and safest way to pay all your expenses while you’re in Seville?
“Do I need cash in Seville?”
“Is it better to use cash or card in Seville?”
“Should I exchange money before I travel to Spain?”
To answer these questions, read this complete tutorial with all the practical information you need to know about using debit and credit cards in Seville, where to find ATMs, and everything related to changing cash.
And here you have a couple of additional links that can prove useful as well:
The takeaway on getting money in Seville
- Get a travel money card and use it everywhere in Seville.
- Make good use of the extensive ATM network. Get your first wad of cash from an ATM as soon as you arrive to the airport.
- Bring a couple hundred euros in cash (notes of 50€ or smaller!) for situations where you can’t use an ATM.
- Don’t choose to be charged in your home currency when withdrawing from ATMs. You’ll pay hidden fees and poor exchange rates handed.
- Don’t pay anything in your home currency when asked. For the same reason as above.
- Avoid paying anything with your credit card (unless it’s an emergency and you don’t have enough travel funds).
- Don’t exchange your local currency into euros after arriving in Seville. You’ll be charged high commission rates and the currency exchange rates are just awful.
- Forget about bringing travelers checks with you. Locals have never heard about them and won’t accept them.
How to access your money in Seville
Fortunately, having access to your money in Seville is super easy.
- Pay directly with your debit card.
- Use an ATM anywhere in the city.
- Look for a place where you can exchange your local currency into euros. But it’s something I don’t recommend because of the high fees and poor exchange currency rates you’ll be charged.
1. Paying directly with your debit card
Travel cards — with innovative multi-currency accounts and traditional banks alike — offer good methods for avoiding fees when withdrawing cash from ATMs, and have the exact same advantages of paying like a Sevillano.
2. Getting money in Seville at ATMs
Accessing an ATM is another cost-effective way to get your hands on euros while in Seville.
The ATM network is one of the biggest in Europe, you’ll probably find a bank branch in each block of every city and every gas station has an ATM.
In general ATMs dispense both 20€ and 50€ notes. People usually carry notes up to 50€ so it is not very common to see 100€ notes or higher. And I’m not even talking about €500 ones… I never had one myself!
Withdrawing with your credit or debit card? This can be painstakingly expensive at ATMs in Seville! That’s why I recommend ordering and using a dedicated travel money card.
It’s a particularly savvy move if you have a bank with low or no foreign transaction fees, which allows you to convert your home currency into euros at excellent exchange rates. Get a debit card with no foreign transaction fees to make cash withdrawals just like a local.
ATM fees in Seville
ATM fees in Spain and around the world will often come in any combination of the following four forms:
- Basic cash withdrawal fee. This fee is often expressed as a percentage of the withdrawal at around 2% or 3%, but it can also be a flat fee that ranges from €1 up to even €5. You typically will be able to review the fee on-screen before completing your transaction, though, so you can cancel if it’s outrageous. Sevillanos can also face this fee.
- Out-of-network withdrawal fee. This fee is charged specifically by your own bank if you do not use ATMs that they operate. Sevillanos can also face this fee.
- Currency conversion fee, or exchange rate margin. This hidden fee mostly applies when travelers spend with their non-local currency. Instead of using the real exchange rate, the local provider will apply rate of 1% or 3% higher than the market rate and keep the difference.
- Dynamic currency conversion fee. It’s a special kind of currency conversion fee that allows you to see the price of your transaction expressed in your home currency. The exchange rate they charge is just abusive.
3 tips when using an ATM in Seville
Tip #1: Pay in euros when withdrawing from ATMs in Seville
The rule here is simple — pay in the local currency (€) and avoid paying in your home currency.
Tip #2: Don’t use a credit card to withdraw cash
All of your credit and debit cards will work in Seville, but if they are not designated as travel cards or if they do not come with international perks, then you can be charged between 1.75% to 4.25% to withdraw cash. Use a dedicated travel money card instead and save yourself money and troubles.
Tip #3: Use your common sense and withdraw the right amount
It’s also a smart idea to take out cash at once, instead of making lots of small withdrawals, to prevent fees from adding up. On the other hand, don’t withdraw too much, as you’ll want to guard against the risks of pickpockets or lost wallets.
3. Getting money in Seville exchanging your local currency into euros
Figuring out how to exchange currency before you travel to Seville could save you a good amount in fees.
If, for any reason, you feel safer traveling with some cash in hand. Exchange your local currency into euros at your local bank or credit union
Because it’s likely has the best exchange rates and lowest fees.
If you prefer to wait until you get to Seville, it’s usually more cost-effective to get cash with your debit card from an ATM at the airport than using an airport exchange kiosk.
Keep in mind that these businesses tend to apply incredibly high commission rates.
However, if you still need to exchange money you can do it at
- Banks are usually open Monday to Friday from 8:00 to 14:15. Some banks open on Thursday afternoon from 16:15 to 20:00 (only in fall and winter).
- El Corte Inglés department store. It opens Monday to Saturday from 10:00 to 22:00.
- Most hotels.
How to pay for your expenses in Seville
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the transition to a cashless society has really gained momentum in Spain. Most places in Seville do accept payment by card, but not under a certain threshold amount.
Therefore, if you want to stop by the nearest churros stand or gorge at the local 5€ tapas bar, you may need cash on hand. And I suggest you avoid paying anything with 100€ notes or higher, most hotels, shops and restaurants don’t accept them.
While tipping is not mandatory in Seville, it’s practiced by Sevillanos from time to time especially when they want to thank staff who provide great service.
So try to always have cash on you.
With a debit or credit card
Spain’s move towards a cashless society has been much slower than northern Europe and before the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, the thought of paying for a coffee or a beer with a card would never have crossed the minds of many.
However, that is all changing, as minimum card payments now cease to exist in many places and the popularity of paying with just a mobile phone is increasing.
Electronic payment is commonly used in Spain, and almost everywhere in Seville: use a debit card for all your expenses and a credit card for emergencies.
I strongly recommend you to use a Wise card during your trip to Spain instead of your traditional bank debit card.
You’ll avoid the fees charged by your bank for spending abroad and abusive currency exchange rates.
- Bus drivers aren’t allowed to change up to a 5€ note. So if you plan to catch the EA bus line from Santa Justa train station or from the Seville airport, it’s best to pay your tickets with your debit card.
- Seville taxis are obliged only to change you up to a 20€ note so they may refuse payment with a higher one. In this case, pay with your debit card.